Qatar Airways arrived in Tokyo yesterday, April 27, 2010 – its second destination in Japan after Osaka and 89th in its current network.
As reported earlier (see news), Gulf carriers have been aggressively pursuing the Japanese market. Etihad and Emirates started up services in March.
Tokyo also marks the fourth route in an vigorous expansion programme that recently included Bengaluru (Bangalore), Copenhagen and Ankara, with flights set to start to Barcelona and the South American cities of Sao Paulo in Brazil and the Argentine capital Buenos Aires in June.
Qatar’s new Tokyo flights concide with Japan’s Golden Week holiday season, and provides Japanese travellers with global connections via its Doha hub.
The state of Qatar and Japan have been enjoying close bilateral ties in past years. Qatar traded US$26.23 billion worth of oil, gas and other exports with Japan in 2008, contributing 11 percent of Japan’s total crude oil imports and almost 12 percent of Japan’s liquefied natural gas imports. There are over 30 Japanese companies now operating in Qatar, with the Japanese community in Doha growing substantially from less than 200 members six years ago to over 1,100 in 2009.
The Tokyo route utilises an Airbus A330 in a three-class configuration consisting of 12 in First, 18 in Business and 208 in Economy.
For more details, visit www.qatarairways.com
Margie T Logarta